Sultan Bin Saeed Al Mansouri, the UAE’s Minister of Economy, is set to head up a trade and investment mission on an upcoming visit to South Africa. The party will leave today following an official invitation from Ibrahim Bateel, South Africa’s Minister of Economic Development.

The delegation’s visit comes at a time when the UAE is attempting to bolster economic and political links between the Emirates and Africa. At the recent first meeting of the UAE’s ambassadors and heads of representative missions in Kampala, Uganda, Foreign Minister Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed, said the following, “Africa is witnessing rapid growth in its population and is able to accommodate various types of foreign investments,” he went on to say, “Our geographical proximity to Africa serves as an opportunity to benefit from their strategic links and activate them in several areas.”

The delegation to South Africa will meet with senior government officials and leaders of major South African companies in order to promote business links and opportunities to be had in dealings between the two countries. Al Mansouri claimed that the mission sought to table discussions on investment opportunities, partnerships and trade between South Africa and the UAE in a number of different sectors.

The visit coincides with the signing of a number of agreements regarding the avoidance of double taxation, investment production and mutual cooperation between various African countries and the UAE. At the Kampala meeting, discussions were held on improving and strengthening existing relations in the economic, investment, trade and energy fields. South Africa is seen as a key partner for the UAE, as trade between the two reached Dh2.8 billion in 2014, a rise of 10.6% from 2013.